Maine Law Professor Mel Zarr speaks about his role in the Civil Rights Movement

Professor Mel ZarrProfessor Melvyn Zarr, a leader in teaching and public service for the past 40 years at the University of Maine School of Law, spoke at the Law School on Wednesday, April 23, about the role he played in the Civil Rights Movement.

More than 150 students, faculty, alumni and guests packed into the Moot Court Room to hear Professor Zarr speak. The presentation was part of a year-long series of events titled “The Civil Rights Act of 1964: 50 Years of Moving Toward Equity & Justice,” which is a collaboration of the NAACP of Portland, the Law School, the University of Southern Maine and other community partners.

Professor Zarr began his legal career in 1963 as a civil rights lawyer in Mississippi, and he quickly developed an expertise in helping his clients, including Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., find refuge in the federal courts.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Civil Rights Act forbids discrimination in employment on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, and age. “The Civil Rights Act of 1964: 50 Years of Moving Toward Equity & Justice” explores the goals the Civil Rights Movement, Congress and President Lyndon B. Johnson sought to achieve, which objectives have been realized, and those which remain unfulfilled.